12/13/11 3:10 PM EST
Piniella close to joining YES network team
By Bryan Hoch / MLB.com
The New York Daily News reported Tuesday that the former player, manager and front-office consultant is close to signing a deal with the YES Network, where he would work as a broadcaster and studio analyst.
A YES Network spokesperson confirmed to MLB.com that there has been dialogue with Piniella, but said that a deal has not been finalized.
Citing anonymous industry sources, the Daily News also suggested that the 68-year-old Piniella would likely serve as a Spring Training instructor for the Yankees.
Piniella worked last season as a special consultant for the San Francisco Giants but resides in Tampa, Fla., where the Yanks' Spring Training complex is located.
According to the Daily News report, Piniella will be in the YES broadcasting booth at Tropicana Field when the Yankees play the Rays next year, including the season-opening series starting April 6.
He would join a cast of YES Network analysts that includes former players David Cone, John Flaherty, Al Leiter, Paul O'Neill and Ken Singleton, plus play-by-play broadcaster Michael Kay.
Piniella has some broadcasting experience -- he worked as a color analyst for the Madison Square Garden Network in 1989 and spent one season as an analyst for FOX Sports after he stepped down as the Tampa Bay manager in 2005.
A right-handed-hitting outfielder during his playing days, Piniella wore Yankees pinstripes from 1974-84 and began his coaching and managing career in the Bronx.
He became the Yanks' hitting coach after retiring as a player, then managed the Bronx Bombers from 1986-87 and most of the '88 season.
He went on to manage the Reds (1990-92), Mariners (1993-2002), Rays (2003-05) and the Cubs (2007-10) before announcing his retirement, stepping down in August 2010 to spend more time with his ill mother.
Bryan Hoch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.